A chapter is one of the main divisions of a piece of writing of some length, such as a book. Chapters can be numbered in the case of such writings as law code (see Chapter 7 or Chapter 11) or they can be titled. For example, the first chapters of some well-known novels are titled:
- "The Boy Who Lived" – Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, J. K. Rowling
- "Into the Primitive" – The Call of the Wild, Jack London
Many novels of great length do not have chapters. Non-fiction books, especially those used for reference, almost always have chapters for ease of navigation. In these works, chapters are often subdivided into sections. The chapters of reference works are almost always listed in a table of contents. Novels sometimes use a table of contents, but not always.
In ancient civilizations, books were often in the form of papyrus scrolls, which contained about the same amount of text as a typical chapter in a modern book. This is the reason chapters in recent reproductions and translations of works of these periods are often presented as "Book 1", "Book 2", etc.